Secrets of the Six Wives

Season 1
 (265)8.22017TV-PG
Historian Dr. Lucy Worsley travels back in time to the Tudor Court of England’s Henry VIII to witness some of the most dramatic moments in the lives of his six wives. Combining drama based on eyewitness accounts and historical sources with Lucy’s own contemporary historical commentary, it is these women’s stories that Lucy sets out to uncover, witness, and explore.
Genres
HistoricalDocumentaryDramaSpecial Interest
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
English

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  1. 1. Divorced
    January 22, 2017
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Lucy reveals the happy marriage of Henry VIII to first wife, Katherine of Aragon. Despite Katherine’s skill and devotion as his Queen, when she fails to give Henry the son he needs, he falls for Anne Boleyn.
  2. 2. Beheaded, Died
    January 29, 2017
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    As Henry breaks with the Roman Church to marry Anne, Lucy sees him grow tired of Anne and fall for Jane Seymour. Anne’s fate is sealed: she is executed and Henry immediately marries Jane. But Jane dies as soon as she gives birth to a son.
  3. 3. Divorced, Beheaded, Survived
    February 5, 2017
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Lucy presents the last 3 wives: Anne of Cleves, the one who was called ‘ugly;’ young Catherine Howard, revealing her tragic abusive childhood; and finally the far-from-saintly nurse, Katherine Parr.

More details

Season year
2017
Network
PBS
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

265 global ratings

  1. 82% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 11% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 3% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 3% of reviews have 1 stars

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Top reviews from the United States

Sheryl FechterReviewed in the United States on March 5, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars“I’m Going to See the Story from Their Point Of View” …
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“And I’ll watch these events unfold” – ‘Lucy Worsley’ does just that as she narrates this eye-opener and extremely entertaining three-part miniseries while doing this in quite a unique way. She includes herself as part of the entire drama in different costumes and parts of King Henry VIII six wives’ lives in the royal castles, gardens, and places of importance or interest. You will find Lucy in the most remote parts of the castle’s bedchambers of the six Queens and hear their own stories told by them unlike what I thought I knew of them. I learned so much information that I had thought I knew, but I didn’t know too much about how these women felt about their roles as the Queen to Henry.

All six women struggled to survive life with a mercurial and frightening King in a very dangerous age during the sixteenth century. You will have a front row seat as Lucy takes you to, and through, the different accounts of each wife, pageantry in luscious costumes, and this makes history feel new all over again. Much of this information is based on personal and historical letters along with documents of which a precious few we all are able to see including the ‘seventeen’ personally handwritten love letters Henry wrote to Anne Boleyn. In three different episodes, we meet the Queens; Catherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour, Anne of Cleves, Katherine Howard, and Catherine Parr. In this historical and ‘from the point of view of the women’ docudrama we find an interesting difference, Henry is not the main voice… the wives have their say as Lucy Worsley (English historian, author, curator, and our personal tour guide) shows us what it really meant to be a royal Queen in King Henry’s overcrowded Dynasty. This is great fun and quite entertaining too, a ‘don’t miss’ for any history buff or for anyone who has an interest in the Tudor King Henry VIII and I think it is about time to hear it said straight from these women: The Queens.
21 people found this helpful
LO Graduate Reviewed in the United States on May 16, 2018
2.0 out of 5 starsThis is not a masterpiece!
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This is at best a good start to knowing about the wives of Henry VIII. However, there are key players missing when it comes to each of these stories. Two well known are Thomas Moore and Thomas Cromwell. Too be honest, the “Tudors” did a more accurate job of portraying the stories.

Also, as a historian myself (received my degree) the portrayal of Anne Boleyn and Henry’s relationship is so misrepresented. Anne and Henry did not start having problems until AFTER the first miscarriage that Anne had, which was after the birth of Elizabeth, but before Jane Seymour. Also Thomas Cromwell played a huge roll in the separation and tension between the two. There is documents saying that he would be the downfall of her. Where is that information? What about the celebration AFTER Katherine died? Where Anne infamously wore yellow? Also, Anne played a huge role in the building of the Church of England. Without her, there would not be a Church of England. She was a devout Christian. So many things missing.

Only reason I gave it 2 Stars is because of the portrayal of Katherine of Aragon, which was the most accurate. However, I am not shocked since the Historian’s bias for the Queen is quite clear...
4 people found this helpful
M. MaraReviewed in the United States on January 28, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsThe Historical Truth About Each Queen. BRILLIANT!
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For history buffs this show is just wonderful. Filled with interesting facts that are never found in dramatized versions of Henry VIII. Plus this show concentrates on each wife, not on the king. Seeing actual letters, the rooms and castles where everything took place, it all adds up to another brilliant BBC/PBS show. By the way, if you love this show then please review it so the two one star reviews from people who don't understand how streaming of a new tv show works won't drag down the rating so bad that people won't watch it.
20 people found this helpful
MMMReviewed in the United States on May 31, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsLoved this! The wives of Henry VIII is a ...
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Loved this! The wives of Henry VIII is a subject I come back to time and time again. This interpenetration was a refreshing re-telling with the added bonus of having the host inside the story itself. Half documentary half drama- haven't seen anything like this before. I watched the whole series in one night and highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in Henry VIII or his wives.
4 people found this helpful
D. SutherlandReviewed in the United States on May 29, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsExcellent! Very enjoyable.
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This was really good! I loved how it was narrated by Lucy Worsley, she was excellent! I enjoyed how as she narrated through the life of each queen and as she herself became part of the story in costume always remaining in the backround.
I never knew many of these facts about the queens and I found it facinating! But also I'm so glad I didn't live in those days!
3 people found this helpful
J. MullallyReviewed in the United States on September 24, 2017
4.0 out of 5 starsInteresting to watch if you like history
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A bit brief, and nothing I did not already know from this history books, but it was a well-presented docu-drama. I loved the costumes and settings. The one thing oddly missing in the later years is the King himself-he becomes more and more paranoid and tyrannical. She does a better job with Catharine of Aragon than any of the other queens. Anne Boleyn comes out as quite flat in the end.
One person found this helpful
MaggieG13Reviewed in the United States on September 4, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsVery much enjoyed this - if you like history or biographies, this is your cup of tea!
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9/4/17 - Just about perfect. An excellent presentation based on historical facts, not fictionalized as are so many films about Henry VIII. I liked that they put the narrator in the scenes in costume - she is so animated and so natural in her delivery, it is a delight to listen to her.
One person found this helpful
SpankeyReviewed in the United States on April 20, 2021
5.0 out of 5 starsI really enjoyed this mini series!
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It was well done flipping back and forth between medieval times and the present. The gal making the presentation was a delight to watch and listen too. Clever how it was done.
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